Over 40 Amateur Of The Week: Larger In Life

For those who like using their age as an excuse, meet Tony. He exemplifies what it means to go hard without making excuses. This 48-year-old got a late start, but made up for it in a big way!

Name: Tony LaGrene
E-Mail: paparocket96@gmail.com
BodySpace: TLFitness
YouTube: TLFitness
Location: Rockton, IL
Age: 48  Height: 5'7"  Weight: 182 lbs
Years Bodybuilding: 2

How did your fitness journey begin?

I've always been involved in competitive sports like martial arts, motorcycle racing, and go-kart racing. I let myself go physically by eating what I wanted when I wanted. I wasn't terribly overweight at 182 pounds when I started getting a gut.

I cut out soda and fried foods, dropped down to 162 pounds after 2-3 months, and noticed my abs looked pretty good. My daughter was 14-years-old at the time, and I figured at some point boys would be coming to my door. I knew the gym would benefit me in many ways. I'd be healthier and have more muscle so the boys knocking on my door would think before getting out of line.

The gym became a big part of my life. I noticed big changes in my physique and wanted to do more to keep achieving results. That was two years ago. I've made good changes, but I have a lot more improvements still to do. Bodybuilding is about constantly evolving and improving your body; you're never done. I believe I can still make noticeable changes at my age.

How did your passion for fitness emerge?

I was looking for something that could make me feel better about myself. I started bodybuilding to achieve that. Bodybuilding is a lifestyle, so I had to change what I was doing. My diet completely changed; no more pop, fried food, or sugars. I've been eating clean since I started this journey. My competitive side keeps me pushing in the gym. I want to be around for my family for as long as possible and this is a great way to do it.

What/Who motivated you?

I love competition. Bodybuilding allows me to compete with myself. There's nobody to blame but myself. I love that it's a 24/7 lifestyle. When you devote yourself to something you enjoy, you see great results. Results fuel the fire inside to keep me going to make improvements.

Bodybuilding is a great stress reliever after a long days work. I get to work at 7 a.m. and I'm there to 5 p.m. without any real breaks. I'm a service manager at a car dealership, so it's hard for me to get away. I'm on the service drive all day long, so I eat meals at my desk or on the drive. By the end of the day, I'm ready to move some weights.

Where did you go for inspiration?

I love watching bodybuilding videos on YouTube; Zhasni and others are great motivators. I joined a local gym directed at hardcore bodybuilders called Asylum Gym. I joined after my show and they welcomed me with open arms. My workout partner and I started driving as far as an hour and half away every other week to visit new gyms. We found a second home gym at USA Gym in Bridgeview, Illinois, owned by IFBB pro Chuck Sanow. He was the judge I talked to the night of my show about opinions. I look forward to making great gains at both gyms.

What are your future fitness plans?

I'm currently training for the masters nationals. My goal is to bring a better package to the stage than the time before. I'm training hard relying on my support group. I want to represent my sponsors in a professional way and do the best I can.

Since my first show, I'm proud and blessed to be sponsored by two supplement companies. Primordial Performance and Jose from Cellucor-Illinois stepped up to support me with products. Without them I would not be able to progress at the rate I am. I thank them and look forward to helping their brands.

I started TL Fitness, a place to go to for personal training, motivation, inspiration, and clothing. I started a TL Fitness page on Facebook and a YouTube channel named TL Fitness. Please stop by. Hopefully you'll find something that helps you achieve your goals. I hope TL Fitness motivates people to make changes in their lifestyle. I've seen many people make changes because of what I have done. They look at it and say: "If he can do it, there's no reason I can't." It's a great feeling knowing that I help people live better and longer through fitness.

What is the most important fitness tip?

This is a lifestyle. You won't take a magic pill and wake up looking like Phil Heath. It takes time and dedication. I have to keep reminding myself the same thing. I want a particular look and I want it to happen right now, but as the saying goes, good things come to those who wait. The changes will be enough to keep you going.

Who is your favorite bodybuilder/fitness athlete?

I have a newfound respect for all bodybuilders after prepping for my show. You have no idea what your body goes through until you yourself experience it. All bodybuilders have my respect and admiration. I really like Shawn Ray, Kevin Levrone, Lee Priest, and Dorian Yates. They have great personalities and provide lots of motivation for people like me.

How did Bodybuilding.com help you reach your goals?

I use Bodybuilding.com for multiple reasons. I use it for supplements because of its large inventory, the articles that provide endless information, and the video series for informative new ways to train. It's a website that I find myself coming back to every day to see what it has.


  • To my wife Jacque and my daughter Paige. Without their support, there's no way I would be able to give this 100 percent. It has made our relationships better. My daughter and I are closer because we work as a team toward a goal. Paige wants to be at my workouts and pushes me to go that extra rep or two. It's a great feeling having her involvement in my goals.
  • To Jr. Wyatt for taking great pictures of me. He made me look pretty good. That's how you know he's good.
  • To Jerry and Brandon who told me I needed to enter a bodybuilding show.
  • To Asylum Gym and USA Gym for letting me film my workouts.
  • To my workout partner, Nick. You're a great partner and opened many opportunities for me.
  • To my sponsors Primordial Performance, Cellucor-Illinois, and Lifestyle Clothing. Sponsors are important to attain your goals. If anyone is interested in partnering with me, I'll give you my all.